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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-16-2005, 04:23 PM Thread Starter
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US Figure Skating Championships

I was so pleased to see Michelle Kwan in such good condition. Her short program was flawless, and her long program was excellent. Lots of sixes! (I'm going to miss that scoring method, but I know it was necessary, because of the problem at the Olympics a few years ago.) She has now tied the record for the most Women's US Titles!--9 I wanted to watch the Dog Show, but I couldn't miss Michelle. I though the American pairs were good this year too!

I will be watching for the men's competition. It might be today! Off I go to check!




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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-16-2005, 06:02 PM
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I have to admit that I didn't watch... I usually do - both the American and Canadian championships. I've grown up around figure skating - and think Michelle Kwan is one of the best female skaters any country has produced in a long time...

As much as the 6.0 system was nice, I actually like this new scoring system sooo much better. I was at the Olympics when the scandal happened - I'm good friends with one of the skaters that it happened to - and after what I saw there was no way they could have gone forward without changes and still maintained a sense of legitimacy as far as scoring and competitons go...

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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-16-2005, 06:51 PM Thread Starter
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ESPN showed some of the short programs today. I know the scoring system had to be changed! What happened to the Canadian pair was an absolute disgrace! And the skaters have been complaining about this for years. It's like anything new; you have to get used to it!

I'm sorry you missed it. I think I've seen almost all of the major competitiions this year. The Chinese are looking great, and they're relatively new in the big events.




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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-16-2005, 07:34 PM
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It seems a lot harder to catch the skating in Canada right now. Now that our big teams have all retired, it seems interest has slipped - at least at the amateur ranks. We have some great skaters coming up, but it will be a while before we hit another Sale-Pelletier, Bourne-Kraatz, or Stojko or Browning...

I know even the skaters have a big adjustment to make with the new scoring system, but I really think it will be better in the long run. I'll never forget the day after Sale and Pelletier skated their long at the Olympics - their friends and family all gathered in the Canadian lounge to wait for them to finish with the media and finally come back... It was something like two in the morning that they finally appeared - we all sang "O Canada" for them since they missed hearing it on the medal podium... I know the Olympic gold is special, but I also know that there's not quite the shine that it should have... and knowing how much sweat went into them getting there, it wasn't easy...

At least this system has set points for completing elements. I haven't quite figured it out, but it seems like it will be harder to play around with...

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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-16-2005, 07:47 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
At least this system has set points for completing elements. I haven't quite figured it out, but it seems like it will be harder to play around with...
That's what I understand. It will take a while.

I understand perfectly what you mean when you say the medal just doesn't have the shine it should. I was outraged that day! The Russian pair, usually excellent, were not up to their norm, and Sale-Peletier were amzaingly good. It was so obvious. I'm so glad you and their other friends sang for them. They deserved the honor that very night!




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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-16-2005, 07:57 PM
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I love ice skating. I would love to go ice skating. I like watching the ice skating shows. I can't wait until we get a pond because then I CAN go ice skating. How long does this go for? Is it in just Canada where they are showing this? Will I be able to see it on TV here in the US?

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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-16-2005, 08:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Jeanie
I understand perfectly what you mean when you say the medal just doesn't have the shine it should. I was outraged that day! The Russian pair, usually excellent, were not up to their norm, and Sale-Peletier were amzaingly good. It was so obvious. I'm so glad you and their other friends sang for them. They deserved the honor that very night!
What more can you do? Jamie and I used to talk of going to the Olympics together... Obviously, she was truer to her workd than I And now she's a celebrity in her own regards, well off financially, and has a wonderful fiance with whom she's madly and deeply in love with. And I'm sitting at home watching her, while I cuddle with my two cats and wait for the next payday to pay off the bills.

I could be jealous.... Okay, I am incredibly jealous of all she has, but I know what she went through to get it and am sooooo happy for her. She had the drive, determination, and talent. I, on the other hand, didn't On the plus side, I do get free Stars on Ice tickets

Quote:
I love ice skating. I would love to go ice skating. I like watching the ice skating shows. I can't wait until we get a pond because then I CAN go ice skating. How long does this go for? Is it in just Canada where they are showing this? Will I be able to see it on TV here in the US?
catlover_2004: Jeanie and I are talking about the US championships that are currently happening, so I'm sure you can catch them on TV... keep an eye open for it.

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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-19-2005, 09:51 AM
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I can't believe I missed this thread! I am a huge skating fan, and Michelle Kwan is definitely my favorite skater! I was a fan of hers originally when she first came onto the scene, quite honestly because she was near my age (she was 13 when I was 12). So I kept rooting for her. But then I became a really big fan after, I think, it was the 1997 season. She was dominating the whole season, and then all of the sudden at nationals she went PLOP, completely broke down, and lost the US Championships to Tara Lipinski (who, I had kept TRYING to like, but she always rubbed me the wrong way). Anyways, then 1997 Worlds had come around, and Michelle had messed up her short program, and was in 4th place after the short program. I was so sad for her, but then she came back in the long program and completely kicked butt! She was so good in that program, and I was so proud of her and admired how she had pulled it together. If I remember correctly, she wound up winning the free-skate over Tara Lipinski, but because she was in 4th place after teh short program, and Tara was right behind her in the free-skate, Tara wound up winning anyways. But Ever since then, I had so much respect for Michelle Kwan and she has been my favorite no matter what!

As for the 2002 Olympics and the pairs scandal, while I think we all *felt* the Canadians as a clear winner, I just want to point out that technically, it really was a lot closer than people thought it was. The Russian team had a significantly harder program, with intricate footwork and transitional moves, while Sale & Pelletier had gone back to one of their older programs (since they knew it was such an emotional crowd-pleaser!), but that this program had significantly less difficulty in between the big moves, and included mostly stroking and crossovers to get from move to move. Now, don't get me wrong, I was really excited when they skated and it felt like a sure-win to me too, but I think it is necessary to point out that it really wasn't likely a conspiracy for ALL the judges... remember that it wasn't just the french judge that put the Russians first. It was a lot closer than people thought!.

I hope the new scoring system works out for the best. The biggest problem, I think, is hte fact that the average lay-person will not understand how this system works, and will have a harder time understanding why person X may have come out ahead of person Y. Most people, after all, don't know the difference between any of the jumps, and will not realize that often, a spin can be as difficult, if not more difficult, than a jump.

You can see the flaws in the 6.0 system upfront on these past championships, though... I mean, Sasha Cohen messed up in her short program: she put her hand down on her combination jump (between the 3lutz and the 2toe-loop), AND had a wonky landing on her 2axel. The hand-down alone merrited a .2 deduction, not to mention the landing. Yet, she still got 5.8's for her technical score, which makes no sense. Furthermore, in her long program, she got equally high marks, despite having falls and hands down in that program too. I like Sasha's skating, and her overall presence on the ice (I really loved her Malaguena short program from last year, it was so musical), but she was definitely lacking in so many ways this past championship, and I don't think she earned the high marks that she received.

Okay... enough rambling about skating... for now
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-19-2005, 03:03 PM Thread Starter
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Heather, I know what you mean about Tara Lipinski. I don't think we had a chance to get fond of her. She turned pro so fast. Also, I can't bring myself to like Sasha Cohen, because she has always come across to me as arrogant. Perhaps it's because I'm such a Michelle Kwan fan! I haven't felt this kind of fondness since (showing my age!) Dorothy Hamill, who won everyone's hearts.

I heard Dick Button say that there has not been a --could it have been a quad???- since Tonya Harding. I was shocked. I think our opinion of her as an athlete has been damaged by her tarnished personal reputation. We're human; we can't help ourselves, I guess....

(I called Mr. Button d*i*c* k*, not Richard, but the automatic censor changed it! I'm not formal! )




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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-19-2005, 03:47 PM
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Yeah, I think Sasha Cohen is kinda arrogant... but unlike Tara Lipinski, I think Sasha is a really good skater, she is very musical and can be very expressive. Tara was just a really bad actress on ice... she'd kinda flap her arms around to be "artistic", while people like Michelle Kwan would use her entire body with swift, flowing motions to emote things. Did you see the interview with Sasha and Robin Wagner about their recent coaching split? (I think i saw it on ESPN's coverage of the short programs on Friday night). Wow... they didn't seem to have many kind words for each other. Robin Wagner was practically calling her lazy and uncommitted! I don't know, Sasha's heart was clearly not in her skating during this championships.

Mr. Button was referring to Kimmie Meissner doing a triple axel. I don't know how accurate those statistics are, because I know for a fact that there have been some triple axels performed recenetly, probably, believe it or not, by junior skaters or in qualifying regionals/sectionals. Maybe they weren't by Americans and/or they are only considering the Senior Rank.

I hope Michelle can continue to do well out there... I am a huge fan of hers, and as a result, I really dont' want to watch her go through another painful olympic experience. While Michelle has amazing technique, very strong fundamentals, she just hasn't done a triple/triple combination in so long, and despite how much she's been able to accomplish without one, the past 2 Olympics have shown that you can't rest on your laurels or another Tara Lipinski will run away with it! For example, I thought Sarah Hughes was a very pleasant skater, but she left a lot to be desired in basic technique (posture, basic jumping technique errors, lack of speed.... If it were up to me, I would have placed the Olympic Free Skate 1) Sarah 2) Michelle 3) Irina, which would have actually resulted in Michelle winning Olympic gold because Sarah was in 4th after the short program due to these flaws). But those 3/3's can really make a difference...

Yeah, I was watching skating when Tonya Harding was still just the mistunderstood trailer-park skater who was kind of a rags-to-riches story. She was never a very elegant skater, but nobody could deny her athleticism and strength. It was awful what happened back then... did you know that if Tonya had been convicted before the Olympics, the then 13-year-old Michelle Kwan would have competed in the 1994 Olympics? I wonder how differently Michelle's career would have transpired if she had gone to the Olympics back then!
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